/Senate advances bill to protect property owners from lawsuits after two-hour debate

Senate advances bill to protect property owners from lawsuits after two-hour debate

The Senate approved legislation Thursday by a margin of 32-17. Opponents claimed that it would exempt property owners and businesses from any liability, even if they fail to take preventive measures such as adequate lighting or security personnel to protect their customers. The legislation’s proponents claim that it primarily codifies how courts handle civil lawsuits involving third-party crimes against businesses. The issue is whether businesses can be held responsible in civil lawsuits if someone enters the property and commits a crime such as assaulting or raping in the parking lot. According to current law, which is interpreted by the state’s courts, businesses bear some responsibility. The legislation that is being considered at this session, according to proponents, would not change this. Proponents of the measure stated that the bills, one from each chamber, are intended to provide relief for business owners from costly lawsuits. “We are one of two states that don’t allow juries to assign fault,” stated Sen. Josh Harkins (R-Flowood), who is involved in the real estate industry. Harkins stated that it was only fair that the perpetrator of the crime should share some of the blame. The Senate floor legislation was criticized by conservative Republicans like Sen. Brice Wiggins (R-Pascagoula) and Judiciary A Chairman Briggs Hopson (R-Vicksburg). Both said that the bill should go through the legislative process. However, they demanded that certain safeguards be included in the legislation so that it cannot be signed by the governor until any changes have been made. Wiggins claimed that businesses would not be held liable because of the way the bill was written. Wiggins cited an incident in 2008 where a man was murdered at a gas station. This was a crime he had been prosecuting as an assistant district attorney for Jackson County. He claimed that the crime was easier because there wasn’t enough lighting at the station. He stated that if the bill had been passed at the time of the crime, family members would not have been compensated for their loss. The grandfather was killed at the gas station. Wiggins stated that he received an A rating from the business groups that supported it, but that he couldn’t support it without further work. He and others also cited language in bill that said a business would not be held responsible if someone has been convicted of any felony within three years. Sens. Sens. This would mean that the security provider will not be compelled to do so. Sen. Jennifer Brannon (R-Philadelphia) stated that “the free market will prevail.” “If a business doesn’t have good lightning and provide safe environments, it will lose customers” The legislation is reminiscent of the 2000s, when bitter battles erupted in the Mississippi Legislature between trial lawyers and business interests. These battles ended in favor of business groups. Wiggins said during the Senate floor debate, “This is an attack on the trial attorneys.” Many senators alluded the fact that multiple real estate agents from the state were present in the Senate gallery as the bill was being discussed. The bill was up for debate Thursday, which lasted approximately two hours. However, it was peaceful. Thursday’s debate on the bill lasted approximately two hours, but was civil.